Background Switcher (Hidden)

Bokeh Bird

Tuesday, September 18, 2018

This female ruby-throated hummingbird is sitting on one of the little shish kebab skewers that I provide for my clients. My clients being the gazillion birds who frequent my yard, who I'm trying constantly to please in creative ways. I've stuck the bamboo skewers, which are exactly the right gauge for tiny hummingbird feet, into the links of the chain holding up one of my hanging baskets. The skewers are almost never without a perching client, because they're close to the feeders and just right for fussy hummer feet.

I haven't known the term "bokeh" for too long. It sounds a bit like a Chet Baker word, doesn't it? It's Japanese, and it refers to the gorgeous thing that happens when the background of a shot goes all blurry and nice. What's behind this bird is my barn-red house siding with a blooming Achimenes "Pink Nighty" in a hanging basket. Wooo. That is some off-the charts nice bokeh. Especially the little dark patch framing the bird.

As soon as I saw her there on the skewer, with the flowers behind her, I knew I had a killer photo op. She was scratching away at her neck and head.

 You'd think a hummingbird's scratching foot would be lightning fast, but it isn't at all. She's got to bring that tiny leg up and over her big long wing, and that's really awkward. So she scratches very slowly.

Then she looks at her foot as if wondering how it got there, up over her wing, and how she's going to get it back where it belongs.

At length, she does, and she rests for a few moments.

Then it's time to scratch the other side of her face. You really must click on this one to embiggen it. Then you can see them all larger.

Because she is a hummingbird, there is always an argument in the offing. She cusses at an incoming bird

and sizes up her opponent. A second later, she shot straight up into the air in pursuit, and my precious moments with her were over.

I'm ridiculously attached to the few remaining hummingbirds in my gardens. I want them to stay forever. They won't, of course, but until they go, they'll get their portraits made. September is the month when the hummingbirds leave. Seems everyone leaves in September. But that also means everyone is passing through in September, and I get to photograph the parade!


Had to chase one out of garage Monday. Use fan rake & after many tries ( keeps hitting ceiling hoping it’s the sky) It rested on rake & again after several tries I got it far enough out the door to see the real sky!! Always thought they left in August & these are the travelers from up north. Try to leave feeders out thru October for left overs...

Aw, Julie, you should leave too, and come see me in NW Oregon! I have Anna's hummingbirds that stay all winter, and you wouldn't need to feel so melancholy. Hugs.

Wow, such gorgeous photos of a tiny itchy noggin. I can't quit smiling.
Thanks for sharing a new word, bokeh. And I swear that "Pink Nighty!" popped into my head at the first picture!

[Back to Top]